The 2023 Mr. Olympia results were a tough pill to swallow for Hadi Choopan, who lost his crown against his teammate Derek Lunsford. Lunsford’s victory was deemed controversial by many, with some fans outright calling the show a robbery. Just a day after winning the coveted Sandow, Lunsford’s Instagram was shut down twice and he and his family have received threats to their safety.
In what appears to be an effort to clear the air, Hadi Choopan took to a pair of recent Instagram stories posts to reflect on his second-place finish. In addition, he stressed that friendships, brotherhoods, and family have “nothing to do with competition.”
Choopan entered the 2023 Mr. Olympia as the reigning champion, a distinction he earned in 2022 after defeating Lunsford and Nick Walker in the finals. Boasting a level of condition rarely seen in the league today, “The Persian Wolf” refused to take a step back under the bright lights of Olympia.
However, the monstrous back and muscular detail of Lunsford prevailed and he walked away from Orlando, Florida as the best bodybuilder in the world. Not only that, but Lunsford made history as the first-ever two-division Mr. Olympia champion (212 Olympia Champ in 2021). Even though the wound is still fresh, Choopan has assured his fans that he’ll be back for vengeance.
Hadi Choopan Makes Statment Amid Safety Threats to 2023 Mr. Olympia Winner Derek Lunsford & His Family
In Instagram stories posts, Choopan revealed he’s begun the healing process after losing his title. He also told his fans that family has “nothing to do with competition.”
“I started to heal the wound from today let’s gooooooooooo” Choopan shared.
“Our friendship, brotherhood, and family have nothing to do with competition. Respect for my family is respect for myself and my country. We are all brothers and respectable and I’m proud for this friendships,” Choopan shared (translated).”
After Bob Cicherillo called Derek Lunsford to accept the first-place prize, Hadi Choopan took one picture and quickly stormed off the stage. While Choopan has yet to address exactly what led to his abrupt exit, some have accused his behavior of being unsportsmanlike though he recently congratulated all winners of the 2023 Olympia. Meanwhile, Dauda’s coach Samson Dauda, reflected on the matter and excused Choopan’s actions.
The 2023 Mr. Olympia competition has left an enduring impact, highlighting the intricate balance between competition and camaraderie among the very best in the sport. Given the dark undertones of this event’s conclusion, fans expect an even more cutthroat rematch on the 2024 Mr. Olympia stage.